When one hears the words “LGBT” and “Homosexuality” it often conjures up a mental picture of people fighting for their rights, which were unjustly taken away or even the social emergence of gay culture in the world in the1980s and the discovery of AIDS. However, many people do not know that the history of LGBT people stretches as far back in humanity’s history, and continues in this day and age. Nevertheless, the LGBT community today faces much discrimination and adversity. Many think the problem lies within society itself, and often enough that may be the case. Society holds preconceptions and prejudice of the LGBT community, though not always due to actual hatred of the LGBT community, but rather through lack of knowledge and poor media portrayal.
Media portrayal of the LGBT community is varying. It may be very positive and a “good” portrayal or negative and instead focuses on the stereotypical aspects of the LGBT community. One definition of a good LGBT television portrayal is one that depicts an LGBT character without over glaringly obviousness of their sexual orientation, or without adding many LGBT stereotypes that are all too often added.
For example, many people believe Willow and Tara from Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a good portrayal of a lesbian couple as it was one of the healthiest relationships on the show as well as realistic in the fact that it did not draw on any of the stereotypes that may or usually are added in LGBT relationships or simply LGBT characters in the media. It was also one of the most extensive couples on the show, ending only when Tara was tragically killed- not as characters often are in LGBT relationships for the sole reason that they are gay, but merely to add suspense and as writer Joss Whedon is infamous for killing off major characters.
Glee is well known for its portrayal of LGBT characters and relationships. They are often portrayed positively, some LGBT characters included Wade Adams- A teenaged boy who identifies as a girl, calling himself “Unique”, as well as Blaine Anderson who is in a relationship with Kurt Hummel, whom both are gay. Kurt Hummel was bullied in the past for his sexuality and Glee’s message of LGBT bullying is both hurtful and wrong. A movie that won critical acclaim is Blue Is the Warmest Color for the portrayal of a lesbian relationship between the two main characters Adèle and Emma. Which, most agreed was an accurate and realistic picture of a lesbian coming of age story, in showing Adèle was not strictly suited in the title ‘lesbian’, however she did love Emma, in spite of their differences and the fact that she was bullied for this by her classmates.
Negative Portrayals of LGBT characters happen all too often. The often have many stereotypes added to them- a lesbian may be shown as ‘butch’ or overly ‘masculine’, a gay man effeminate, or a bisexual character as being absurdly promiscuous, a transgender character as often being used as a joke to their heterosexual counterparts,...